Spanish high fashion house Balenciaga has levelled up in their most recent creative project; ‘Afterworld: The Age of Tomorrow’. Blurring the lines between the virtual and the reality, Balenciaga is showcasing their Fall 21 main Haute Couture collection via an interactive video game.
Available on December 6th for free on all browser friendly devices, the brand states that the inspiration for the innovative gaming idea lays between ‘mythological pasts’ and futuristic ‘projected futures’ and follows the set of a 2031 dystopian world, where a heroine makes their way through an adventure-filled journey.
Balenciaga has been frugal with releasing details of the game which only builds fans anticipations, however, it has been revealed that the story progression of the game will entail the Earth evolving from a decayed space to a world which has reconnected ‘a balance between nature and industry’. Visuals are expected to illustrate an eclectic mix of historical archetypes and tech-infused scenes, which are brought to fruition by Balenciaga funding cutting edge computer technology and photogrammetry.
With 2020 taking a hit to creative freedom, the traditional notion of fashion shows is put on a standstill, which forces fashion houses to live and breathe an artistic revolution or get left behind. While Balenciaga is paving the way with fashion and gaming crossovers with producing their own gaming platform, we have seen collaborations with other notorious fashion houses and established gaming names, which signals a newfound relationship between wearable art and virtual art.
The likes of Marc Jacobs, Nike and Valentino have partnered with household name game ‘Animal Crossing: New Horizons’ to produce in-game collections for characters to purchase and wear. Similarly, Italian mogul Gucci has recently signed a partnership with smaller gaming platforms ‘Drest’ and ‘Tennis Clash’. While the luxury fashion houses are the first to dip their toe in the unknown territory of gaming fashion, we are seeing the idea filter through to the high street brands such as UNIQLO, who have collaborated with the widely used mobile game ‘Pokemon GO’.
The worldwide restrictions the year has burdened the world with have taken away what fashions most praised events of the year means, but in times of adversity even creativity cannot be contained and Balenciaga are leading the way of what could be a whole new age for the fashion industry. It isn’t game over yet.
Words by Sophia Zenonos